FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: What happens if the bond doesn't pass?
We will likely need to implement creative scheduling options (year-round school, tracks, split schedules, etc.) as a way to address capacity challenges, in addition to adding more modulars and increasing class sizes.
Q: Why does Weld RE-4 need to ask taxpayers for funding? Why doesn't growth pay for itself?
In Colorado, education is funded by state and local revenue. As our local communities grow and assessed values increase, local sources fund more and the state funds less. Our "net" as a district does not change, no matter how much our communities grow. Learn more about school funding.
Q: What is the difference between a bond and a mill?
Typically, bond measures help fund capital projects (school construction), whereas the mill levy overrides fund operations (teacher salaries, operational costs, etc.).
Q: How many schools are in Weld RE-4, and how many students do we serve?
This school year (2021-22), we served 8,104 students. The district boundary encompasses 103 square miles, and includes Windsor, Severance, West Greeley, and unincorporated Weld County. Our district is home to two high schools, two middle schools, four elementary schools, one primary school, and one charter school that offers elementary, middle, and high school programs.
Q: How many of these students come from outside of our boundaries?
Due to capacity issues, Weld RE-4 greatly limits how many choice applications we accept from students outside of our boundaries. For the 2021-22 school year, there were 709 choice enrollment students, 445 of which attend Windsor Charter Academy. It should also be noted that this number includes the children of our staff members.
Q: Where will the new elementary schools be located?
The potential new elementary schools will be located in the RainDance and Peakview neighborhoods.
The Peakview location will decrease overcrowding at three schools: Grandview, Range View, and Mountain View/ Tozer. It will allow us to serve Severance families currently in Grandview’s boundary, at Range View.
Due to the size of the RainDance development, we expect to open the school with significant enrollment. This location will also accommodate enrollment from new housing developments on the western part of our district boundaries.
Locating elementary schools at Peakview and Raindance will balance enrollment at each our K-5 campuses at an average of about 520 students each.
Q: When was the last time Weld RE-4 asked for and received bond funding?
In 2016, voters approved a school bond of $104.8 million for renovations and innovations at Windsor High School (including the construction of the Innovation Center), the construction of Severance High School, facility investments and improvements across the district’s elementary and middle schools, and facility improvements to other district facilities. Learn more about the 2016 Bond Oversight Committee and read their final report.
Q: Why did the costs increase from the 2021 bond measure on the same projects?
Due to the economy, the construction industry is experiencing dramatically escalating prices, as well as the effects of inflation. At the time of the 2021 election, the bond market was also much more favorable. Our bonds were expected to sell for 20% premium, meaning we would receive more funds than asked for. This allowed us to budget soft costs into the premium funds. Today, we can expect 5-8%. This amount cannot support the soft costs, and, so, they need to be budgeted within the bond funding request.
Q: Why is Weld RE-4 considering a bond program?
Growth in student enrollment in Weld RE-4 is aligned with new neighborhood developments within our boundaries. The towns of Severance and Windsor issued more than 1,200 single-family building permits in 2021. Active construction is occurring in the Promontory neighborhood of West Greeley, and there are multiple large projects in the approval stage with the City of Greeley.
Eight of our nine schools have exceeded their building capacity. To help manage this challenge, we’ve purchased modulars that will be installed at schools this summer. Every single school in our district will have at least one modular next year, with 24 modulars housing 73 classrooms districtwide.
Q: Would charter schools help alleviate growth?
Yes and no. As a school of choice, a charter school is open to students within and beyond the Weld RE-4 School District boundaries. Agreements regarding the percentage of students that need to be from within the Weld RE-4 School district boundaries or prioritization of local students is one of the negotiated items with charter applicants.
Q: Why did the school district not sell RainDance to a future charter school?
The RainDance site is a key component to the district's long-range plan and addressing the continued rapid growth in our community.
Q: What is the status of the RainDance property transfer to the district?
The land transfer documentation has been completed by both parties, and the acceptance of the land was approved by the Board at its May 16 meeting.
Timeline of Recent Events:
April 5, 2022: Martin Lind sent an email to Jason Seybert confirming that he has signed the necessary documents for land transfer of ownership. Seybert then sent the documentation to legal counsel for review.
April 13, 2022: During the verification process with the Town of Windsor Planning, utilities were not yet on site.
April 14, 2022: Jason Seybert emailed Tom Siegel, the representative of Water Valley Company, to confirm the utility conditions were unmet.
April 15, 2022: Jason Seybert and Tom Siegel spoke via phone, and Siegel confirmed that the language in the developer agreement had not yet been met. The two agreed that the necessary utilities, according to the agreement, would be installed as required at no cost to the district. This agreement was to entail that utilities will be installed prior to construction, upon request, prior to acceptance of the land. Siegel agreed to drafting and sending an agreement to confirm this, and once reviewed and accepted by both parties, the district would accept the land.
April 20, 2022: Martin Lind contacted the district stating it was his understanding of the agreement that utilities did not need to be on-site prior to the district accepting the land, and there was already a provision in place for the utilities to be installed when the district was ready to build.
April 20, 2022: Jason Seybert forwarded Martin Lind’s email with his position to legal counsel for review.
April 28, 2022: Jason Seybert informed Martin Lind and Tom Siegel that after legal review, the district will accept the land as the agreement states, and it will be taken to the Board of Education for approval at the May 16, 2022, meeting with an anticipated closing date of May 17, 2022.
April 29, 2022: New closing documents were provided by the title company.
May 11, 2022: Closing documents were included in the May 16, 2022, Board of Education packet with a recommendation to accept the land and assign authority to Jason Seybert to sign all closing documents.
May 16, 2022: The Board of Education approved the acceptance of the land and assigned authority to Jason Seybert to sign all closing documents.